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tv   NBC Nightly News  NBC  February 17, 2013 6:30pm-7:00pm EST

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yeah, we are. no, we're not. ♪ ask an allstate agent about the value plan. are you in good hands? on this sunday night, the frantic moments after the girlfriend of olympic runner oscar pistorius was shot in his home. the calls to police, the attempts to save her. tonight, what the athlete's father is saying about the murder charge. border war, as the white house proposes a path to residency for illegal immigrants, how some americans along the border are taking matters into their own hands to fight the smugglers. preventing autism. new research on how a well-known vitamin supplement could play an even bigger role in protecting children against the increasingly common disorder.
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and the camelot collection. jfk's life and times revealed in thousands of items owned by his close friend and adviser and up for auction. good evening. there are several new petes of information out tonight providing new insight into the shocking murder case against olympic hero, oscar miss forrious, the double-archty who ran into history in the london summer games. police in south africa have charged the track star with the premeditated murder of his girlfriend inside his home. tonight, evidence said to have been recovered it scene, along with reports of phone calls made at the home after the shooting are shedding new lighten case against him, even as those closest to pistorius rally to his defense. nbc's michelle kosinski
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continues to follow developments in this case and joins us again tonight from pretoria. michelle? >> reporter: good evening, lister. oscar pistorius has been in jail here now for four days. tonight, his agent just canceled all of his upcoming races. while the press here has been full of reports quoting police sources about what allegedly happened inside his home early that morning. for oscar pistorius another day in jail brought visits again from his sister, a local preacher -- >> he was starting to cry, the coroner telling him i come to pray with him. >> reporter: also his agent. >> the nature of my visit was a professional manner to discuss obviously his career, especially the plans we had made for this year. also to visit him as a friend and give him my moral support. >> reporter: the press here has been overwith every detail they can find. newspapers quote police sources now, saying they believe reeva steencamp was first shot in pistorius's bedroom, then
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through the bathroom door, that he then apparently broke through to try to help her, that a cricket bat is now considered a key piece of evidence there is an interview with someone identified as his best friend saying he got a frantic call from miss tourious at 3:55 this morning. i said what are you talking about? he then repeated himself there has been a terrible accident, i shot re. va. another publication refers to a sworn police affidavit reportedly given by a woman who says she was also called by pistorius at 3:20 a.m. the report claims she arrived to see pistorius carrying a gravely injured steenkamp down the stairs and both tried to save her life. the call for paramedic was not made by pistorius, but his family strongly denies the shooting was at all intentional. his father quoted as saying he has zero doubt his son acted on instinct, believing he thought steenkamp was an intruder. steenkamp's father says of
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pistorius he must be going through things we don't know b there is no hatred in our heart he is. now, with concerns over his emotional state, pistorius waits in a cell, accused of the most serious crime. remember, police have been dismiss sive of suggestions that steenkamp might have been mistaken from an intruder. shouting was heard from the home earlier that night. pistorius' bond hear, tuesday, the same day as steenkamp's funeral. lester? >> michelle kosinski tonight, thank you. back in this country, the bipartisan effort to craft a way forward on immigration reform hit a bump in the road today when a story hit saying that the obama administration had already written up a plan of its own. that upset many republicans and sent the white house and democrats into damage control. nbc's kristen welker is in port st. lucie tonight with more on that. kristen? >> reporter: lester, good evening. president obama has long said if congress can't come up with an immigration reform bill, he will submit his own proposal to the
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hill. but now that leaked copy of his plan is inflaming an already heated debate. while president obama vacationing in florida hit the links with tiger woods in this palm city community, the immigration debate got a fresh jolt when "usa today" reported on a leaked copy of the president's immigration proposal. according to the paper, the draft bill would create a new lawful prospective immigrant visa that would allow illegal immigrants to become legal permanent residents in eight years and the plan would boost border security funding and require employers to check immigration status of new hires. >> good evening. >> reporter: that drew sharp criticism from republican senator marco rubio, a key figure in the bipartisan group working on immigration reform. in a statement, he said, "if actually proposed, the president's bill would be dead on arrival in congress, leaving us with unsecured borders and a broken legal immigration system for years to come." >> well, let's make sure it
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doesn't have to be proposed. >> reporter: today, white house chief of staff dennis mcdonough doned the report, insisting you the president has not put a bill forward yet, hoping that congress will act first. >> we will be prepared in the event that the bipartisan talks going on the hill, which, by the way, were very aggressively supporting, if those do not work out, then we will have an option that will be ready to put out there. >> reporter: but republicans suggested the white house was playing politics. >> leaking this out does set things in the wrong direction. >> this raises the question that many of us continue to wonder about. does the president really want a result or does he want another cunning jill to beat up republicans? >> reporter: democratic senator chuck schumer tried tamp down tensions over the leaked report. >> we have talked to senator rubio and he is fully on board with our process and i am very hopeful that in march, we will have a bipartisan bill. >> reporter: that bipartisan group of senators continues to work on immigration reform but passage remains uncertain with
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lawmakers sharply divided over a number of key issues, including a path to citizenship. lester? >> kristen, i want to talk to you about another major issue. we ended the week with president's nomination of chuck hagel as defense secretary on hold were do thing goes from here? >> reporter: well, on "meet the press," senator john mccain said while he doesn't believe hagel is qualified, he also doesn't believe his nomination process should be held up any longer. the full senate is expected to vote on hagel when it reconvenes next week. >> kristen welker tonight. thank you. as you just heard, one of the big issues in the immigration debate is border security. despite progress claimed by the federal government, nbc's mark potter found that for some americans who live near mexico, the border is anything but secure. >> reporter: in the rugged terrain south of tucson, arizona, advocates concerned buzz border security took matters into their own hands and placed motion sensitive hidden cameras on known smuggling
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trails and this is their video, revealing wave after wave of mexican drug and immigrant smugglers, some of them heavily armed who cross the border and travel miles north inside the united states. >> a trail coming in. >> reporter: it's why rancher david beckham made the painful decision to move his family off his land, 12 miles north of the mexican border, because of all the armed smugglers crossing his property, threatening his home. >> it was unsafe. i couldn't -- i couldn't see raising our children -- you know, i was afraid to let the kids go out even in the day. >> reporter: resident here in this rugged desert say in the daytime it is relatively quiet but all of that changes as night falls and the land comes alive. recently, neighboring rancher are jim chilton found a mexican drug smuggler's camp on his land, ten miles north of the border. the next day there, he found an active smugglers' trail littered with water bottles. >> it's like living in a no
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man's land. the border patrol doesn't really protect us. they try to arrest people north of us mainly. >> i feel that the united states has made a decision not to guard the border where they should. we should guard the border at the border. >> reporter: the u.s. border patrol concedes that a forward operating base, designed to house agents right on the border at nearby sasabee, arizona is currently not staffed because of budget shortages, but customs officials say the border patrol still works hard to protect the ranchers. and with increased manpower and technology, has dramatically reduced illegal border crossings. >> the fact of the matter is that substantial gains have been made. we need to make additional gains do we want them to feel safe in their homes? absolutely. >> reporter: but ranchers say they still feel unprotected on their own land, along a border they insist is not secure. mark porter, nbc news, arivaca,
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arizona. it was an overwhelming display of affection outside the vatican today as tens of thousands crowded st. peter's square for one of pope benedict xvi final public appearances. the pope will set step dune 11 days from now setting in motion the search for a new leader and maybe a new direction for the catholic church. nbc's anne thompson is at the vat tan cannes tonight with more. anne? >> reporter: good evening, lester. tonight, the pope is on a week-long lenten retreat inside vatican with the dives his papacy numbered. now, every public appearance of benedict sass must-s-- benedicta mist-see event. for more than 50,000 people, this was the place to be a vigil of faithful and curious in st. peter's square to say thank you and good-bye to pope benedict xvi. >> i definitely wanted to come and witness it. >> reporter: 20-year-old thaddius howard of georgia brought an american flag.
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>> i wanted to let the pope know that he is supported by all of us from america. >> reporter: in six different languages, benedict addressed the crowd. >> thank you for the prayers and support you have shown me. are.are in german, he spoke of his difficult days. [ speaking german ] >> reporter: in spanish, he asked for prayers for himself and the future pope. [ speaking spanish ] >> reporter: benedict's retirement creates a situation not seen in the church in centuries two living popes. john thavis who could have earth the vatican for 30 years says benedict is not a meddler. >> he probably will ensure whatever he does, woe never upstage the next pope. >> reporter: while appreciated today as a holy man, critics say benedict's executive skills fell woefully short. >> there's a need for someone who has managerial skills in terms of running the ship of state. neither john paul ii nor
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benedict were managers by nature. >> reporter: benedict's failures made public in documents leaked by his butler last year, laying out the betrayals and infighting in the vatican bureaucracy known as the cure ya, on securing the pope's message and hurting his efforts to revitalize the church. how much of that can be blamed on the kur rhea? >> i think most of it, frankly. >> reporter: george weigle, nbc's vatican analyst, says that leaves the next pope with a crucial task. >> he has to find someone who can clean house and who can make the cure ya an instrument of what we call the new eadvantage lizization now, an impediment to t. >> reporter: still up in the air, the date when the cardinals will actually start getting down to work to choose a new successor. currently, the conclave is scheduled to start some time between march 15th and march 20th, but the vatican says that date could be moved up. lester? >> anne thompson in rome tonight. thank you. here in this country, port
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of the northeast are dealing with blizzard conditions for the second time in as many weeks. ♪ delivered snow and very strong winds to much of new england. boston has already gotten more than five inches of snow and totals so far range from a few inches to more than half a foot in some places, with coastal areas like cape cod seeing the worst of it the sto. the storm is is expected to dump more snow to maine, expected to be under a blizzard warning until noon tomorrow. although the storm lacked the intensity of last week's blizzard, satellite images show they look quite similar. the issue of climate change drew a big crowd, demanding action today in washington. thousands of people marched past the white house and urged president obama to take strong measures to combat climate change. they called for greater support of clean energy technologies and voiced opposition to the controversial xl keystone pipeline that would carry oil from canada to the gulf of mexico. there's a lot more ahead as
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nightly news continues on a sunday. a new study suggests how women may dramatically reduce the chances their children will develop autism. and later, making a difference at a school where the kids are taught they have more to given that they may think. see life in the best light.
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but we can still help you see your big picture. with the fidelity guided portfolio summary, you choose which accounts to track and use fidelity's analytics to spot trends, gain insights, and figure out what you want to do next. all in one place. i'm meredith stoddard and i helped create the fidelity guided portfolio summary. it's one more innovative reason serious investors are choosing fidelity. now get 200 free trades when you open an account. we're back with health news tonight, an important finding involving autism and how women may reduce the risk of their children developing it. a study in the journal of the american medical association found that expanding the use of folic acid, a commonly used vitamin, had a big impact. we get more tonight from nbc's chief science correspondent, robert bazell. >> reporter: dr. goldwasser is an ob/gyn who counsels women how
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to have a healthy pregnancy. she is also pregnant and knows a nutritious diet plus folic acid is up supplements are an important part of giving her baby the best chance for a healthy body and brain. concern starts even before the pregnancy. >> of women's health before she becomes pregnant definitely will influence the way that her pregnancy is going to progress. >> reporter: while it is well known that folic acid can reduce the chance of certain birth defects, the latest study suggests that women who take folic acid supplements before getting pregnant may also reduce the risk of having a child with autism. the researchers followed the development of more than 85,000 children born in norway between 2002 and 2008 and tracked their progress until last year. they found that mothers who started taking folic acid supplements at least one month before getting pregnant and continuing for two months into the pregnancy had a 40% reduced chance of having a baby that later developed autism. >> folic acids helps to make sure that the brain cells grow
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at the rate that they should be growing. >> reporter: so how much of the supplement should women take? the march of dimes recommends 400 micrograms a day. experts advise that all women who think they may become pregnant should be taking folic acid continually, an important part of the effort to have the healthiest child possible. robert bazell, nbc news, new york. when we come back, the making of a president, a collection of jfk history up for sale. day and night relief of heartburn symptoms caused by acid reflux disease. there is risk of bone fracture, and low magnesium levels. side effects may include headache, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. call your doctor right away if you have persistent diarrhea. other serious stomach conditions may exist. don't take nexium if you take clopidogrel. ask your doctor if nexium is right for you. find out how you may be able to get nexium for just $18 a month at purplepill.com
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this year will mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of president john f kennedy. and so it was no surprise that there was high interest today in an auction house -- at an auction house in massachusetts where thousands of kennedy items that belonged to a close friend and aide to jfk were auctioned off. >> the floor now $1,000 where? $1,000? >> reporter: pieces of american history up for sale, materials collected over nearly 20 years, marking a friendship with an american president.
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it all belonged to dave powers, john f. kennedy's personal assistant and close friend. >> he was only president for two years and ten months and two days. >> reporter: powers ran the jfk library. he died in 1998. last year, his family discovered he had also kept his own collection. today, these intimate items went to the highest bidder, rare pictures of a young first couple, kennedy's presidential seal, his air force one bomber jacket and the president's schedule from that tragic day in dallas in 1963. dave powers was there, keeping note he is in the margin. "my president is dead," he wrote. the auction drew hundreds of people to a small town in northern massachusetts, another thousand people on line. >> amazing amount of people. it's bogging down the biggest live auctioneer site in the world. >> it's going to be $151 --
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>> reporter: james daily acres physical therapist, bought this war-time letter about kennedy's back and leg pain as a young lieutenant in the navy. >> i'm interested in this because i'm not medical field and some of the tests that i read about in this letter are some of the same things that i do on a daily basis. >> reporter: auction officials say the money will go to dave powers' estate. >> i will always remember him for his humor and his humility and his courage. >> reporter: today, average americans had their chance to remember him, too. >> this is for the people now. this is for everybody. >> reporter: and to take home some pieces of his life. the powers family discovered the kennedy items as they we preparing the family home for sale. at daytona beach today, danica patrick earned the biggest achievement of her four-year nascar career. patrick became the first woman to secure the coveted pole position, the top spot in next weekend's daytona 500. she drove the 2 1/2-mile course
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in just under 49 seconds, averaging 196.4 miles per hour. just behind her was jeff gordon, a three-time daytona 500 winner who congratulated patrick and said he was the fastest guy today. and this is gonna make a lot of folks see their own youth pass right before their eyes. michael jordan turned 50 today. has it really been a decade since perhaps the greatest nba star of all time retired? and almost three decades since his pro career was launched with the chicago bulls? jordan redefined how we think of basketball and air, with his air jordan brand for nike, he was and is the face behind one of the most successful marketing campaigns in history, a true all-star for all time. and up next, a school where giving back is now a lesson learned. [ male announc ] susan writes children's books. when she's happy, she writes about bunnies. when she's sad, she writes about goblins. [ balloon pops, goblin growling ] she wrote a lot about goblins after getting burned in the market.
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finally tonight, a story that proves that almost anyone can make a difference in the lives of others. it's about a school where so many of the children are in need and yet, they are still learning one of the most valuable lessons in life, giving back. nbc's john yang has tonight's making a difference report. >> reporter: lorenzo r. smith
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elementary school in pembroke township, i will, serves one of the poorest communities in the midwest. gravel roads no supermarket, no gas station. school officials say 97% of the students live in poverty, their families relying on government aid to survive. nearly a third are homeless. teachers and administrators wanted to teach these children who get so much from others a lesson in giving. >> it would give them the initiative to say that i'm determined to help others because i've always been the receiver. and now it's time for me to give back. >> reporter: the school teamed with a char knit new york state called family to family, which sends them much-needed books and backpacks. >> we know that it's important to feed their hungry bellies but we also began to realize that feeding hungry minds and feeding hungry souls would be just as important. >> reporter: older students choose books to give to younger ones. >> wait till you see what's in these boxes.
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>> i read books like this when i was little. >> reporter: then spend time reading to them. >> you know what that is? >> here's a mother with their baby. >> reporter: the hope is all the students take away something that will last a lifetime. the younger students get the joy of ownership. which one did you read today? >> i read two. >> you read both of them? >> reporter: and older students like fifth grader omave epps have the opportunity to pass along a love of books. >> if they get to my grade and do the same thing they can encourage their kids or other students to read, too. >> if they are not taught the art form of giving, they won't know how to start off, they won't know how to do it. >> reporter: giving those with less the gift of giving. john yang, nbc news, pembroke township, illinois. and these "nbc nightly news" for this sunday.

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